Bukalapak, Victorian government partner for Melbourne-based tech hub
Bukalapak has partnered with the Victorian government for a new learning and development tech hub located in Melbourne’s CBD.
The hub – Bukalapak’s first international base – aims to recruit new talent and focus on innovation and product development. It will also serve double duty as a learning and development centre for both Australian and Indonesian engineers who specialise in analytics, artificial intelligence and research and development.
A total of sixty five jobs will be created over the next five years as a result of the endeavour.
Bukalapak helps small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and family-owned businesses digitise themselves for online trade. It currently services more than 10 million SMEs, close to seven million online merchants and more than 100 million users. It enjoyed the largest ever initial public offering on the Indonesian Stock Exchange back in August 2021, with a valuation of six billion rupiah.
Bukalapak president Teddy Oetomo explained why Melbourne was the right choice for the e-commerce unicorn.
“Melbourne’s tech ecosystem is an ideal base for Bukalapak to establish this tech hub, which enables Indonesia’s tech talent to work together with tech professionals from Australia and around the world,” Mr Oetomo said.
The Indonesian Ambassador to Australia and Vanuatu, Dr Siswo Pramono, spoke to the collaborative nature of the new centre.
“Bukalapak’s tech hub in Melbourne is an applaudable initiative to support Indonesian digital growth,” Dr Pramono said, “and a valuable opportunity for tech talents from the two countries for knowledge and information exchange on the use of technology.”
Back in 2019, former Bukalapak head of public policy and government relations, Even Alex Chandra, highlighted the need for such a partnership.
“I believe that we could find this middle ground – Australia can learn from Indonesia and Indonesia can learn from Australia,” he told the AIC’s Helen Brown.
“Australia is very focussed on the B2B side while Indonesia is very strong on the C2C side so maybe we can learn from that,” he continued. “And I also see that Australia has lots of initiatives in pushing that digital ecosystem.”
The Minister for Innovation Medical Research and the Digital Economy Jaala Pulford, looked ahead to opportunities presented by the partnership.
“The opening of Bukalapak will create new high value digital jobs over the next five years,” the Minister said. “This demonstrates the quality of our tech talent and R&D capabilities to respond to the growing need for tech skills across various sectors.”
Bukalapak said it plans to explore partnerships with Victorian universities in order to tap into its pool of technical talent. Its Melbourne-based office is located on Elizabeth Street in the CBD and officially opened this week; a Sydney, NSW-based office is planned for mid-February.